Looking back on 12 memorable months
2016 has certainly seen its fair share of ups and downs. The news has been awash with challenging issues and emotive announcements. However, as the new year comes around, we have the chance to look back at what has taken place this year. Let’s take a moment to remember the happy times, celebrate the worth of those we’ve lost and learn from the past. It’s time to celebrate the births, weddings and great achievements this year has brought and look forward to those still to come.
The stork has been busy this year, delivering bundles of joy around the globe. Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and his wife Jules announced the arrival of their fifth child, and first boy, in August – interestingly named River Rocket. Proving that parenthood is not just for the young, rockers Ronnie Wood, 69, and Mick Jagger, 73, both welcomed new members to their families this year. Tennis sensation Andy Murray and his wife Kim Sears became parents for the first time when they had a baby girl in May. Other famous faces that were blessed with new arrivals this year included Benedict Cumberbatch, Anton du Beke, Natalie Portman and Chelsea Clinton.
Lost, but always remembered
This year the world lost more than its fair share of talent – household names we have grown up with and whose work will leave a lasting testament to their craft. The music industry lost legends as David Bowie, Prince and Leonard Cohen in 2016, leaving behind a vast compendium of hits and legions of dedicated fans.
We also said a sad farewell to national treasure Terry Wogan. The much-loved broadcaster and presenter died in January after a short battle with cancer. The world of comedy will never be the same again as many greats, such as Victoria Wood, Caroline Aherne, Gene Wilder, Ronnie Corbett and Andrew Sachs (the unforgettable Manuel in Fawlty Towers) all passed away.
One Britain’s great actors, Alan Rickman, died of cancer this year, aged 69. Known as one of this country’s great stage actors and recognised the world over for his portrayal as Professor Snape in the Harry Potter films.
Sport also suffered a great loss, when legendary boxer Muhammad Ali died in June. They may no longer be with us but they have left a treasured legacy that will bring us joy for years to come.
Weddings are a time of great happiness and celebration and this year many celebrities have tied the knot. Cycling’s golden couple, Laura Trott and Jason Kenny, married in a private ceremony in Cheshire in September shortly are their Olympic success. In March, Rupert Murdoch and Jerry Hall wed in London, guests included Sir Michael Caine, Sir Bob Geldof, Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber, as well as the couple’s 10 children from previous relationships. Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps married Nicole Johnson in a secret ceremony in Arizona in June this year.
It hardly seems like four years ago that we were hosting the Olympics and yet, in August 2016 it was Rio’s turn to host the global sporting event. Britain did us proud – accumulating a grand total of 130 medals – including 59 golds.
Cycling proved to be a real tour de force with Jason Kenny bring home three golds, his wife Laura Trott two and Sir Bradley Wiggins earning another gold in the Men’s Team Pursuit. Mo Farrah added another two gold medals to his collection and Andy Murray was victorious in the Men’s Singles. We also excelled at the Paralympics – earning 147 medals and Dame Sarah Storey won her 14th Paralympic gold medal, making her Britain’s most successful Paralympian.
It wasn’t just at the Olympics that Andy Murray shone. The tennis player also gained the Gentlemen’s Singles title this year at Wimbledon. Serena Williams successfully defended her Ladies’ Singles title – increasing her wins to a record of 22 major singles titles. In Football, Leicester City beat 5000-1 odds to win the Premier League for the first time.
The political year has certainly been packed full of both events and controversy, from the EU referendum and Brexit to the election of Donald Trump as President of United States. Battles have been fought, winners announced and many debates still rage on, dividing opinions. All we can hope is that 2017 brings a calmer political front than the polemic rallies of the past year.
Something to smile about
There have been many reasons to smile in 2016. We celebrated The Queen’s 90th birthday with many events including performances at Windsor Castle, a charity gala and the Trooping of the Colour.
Other positives of the year – Tim Peake returned home safely from his International Space Station mission, after a 1.7-billion-mile journey, lasting five years. The Cubs baseball team won the World Series for the first time in 108 years and tiger numbers have increased for the first time in a century!
Seasons greetings and the very best of wishes for 2017 from all of us at Patra.